Ramadan is here and that means preparing for the holy month has started. There is a significant difference and momentum in celebrating Ramadan in a Muslim country. The same goes to say for Christmas in a majority Christian country, the feeling is so contagious that even Muslim fall in love with everything about the season. The same goes for Ramadan in a Muslim country, there is an indescribable magnetic force that makes everyone excited for the holy month.
There are a couple of traditions that I have noticed and begun to adapt in my life, that happens in Egypt right before Ramadan starts. About a month prior to the holy month you began seeing grocery stores filled with Ramadan decorations and selling Ramadan’s popular foods, such as dates, dry fruits, juices, sugar, all types of flours and nuts, and much more. People usually rush to the big supermarkets to fill their pantries with a month’s worth of supplies.
Women go shopping with their children in search of the perfect outfit for Eid day (the ceremony commemorating the end of Ramadan). This allows the kids to get extra excited for Ramadan when most kids are given gifts, and money and get to show off their new clothing.
Most people start uncluttering their homes before Ramadan, kind of what we do during spring cleaning in the states. This is a great opportunity to get rid of old unwanted items around the house and get everything tidy for Ramadan.
Lights and decor fill up the streets giving a magical atmosphere to the chaotic country of Egypt. Lanterns, table clothes, pillows, and much more with Ramadan patterns fabrics are sold everywhere in the streets.
Ramadan is not only expressed outwardly, many people start preparing spiritually as well. Many fast prior to Ramadan in order to gain spiritual momentum before the beginning of the holy month. Others set daily goals and practices such as praying on time, reading the Quran every day, and doing charitable acts.
As a mother of four kids and breastfeeding, fasting can be quite a challenge. As the kids don’t understand the strain that fasting has on the body, they still need to be fed, entertained, and catered to while running on very low energy. There are however, some hacks and tricks that you can have under your sleeve that will help you facilitate the process of fasting and provide more time towards your Ramadan goals and strengthen the connection between you and the Creator.
The best advice I got from a friend for Ramadan is to meal prep. Having your veggies and meats already prepared in advance saves a tremendous amount of time and hardship when you are fasting but have to feed your little kids. The kids still need to eat throughout the day and one might need to spend more time in the kitchen during Ramadan than one may think. If we can make life easier, especially while fasting then why not do it!
Get to organize what and where you will give to charity beforehand. That might entail making a list of things you need to buy or give away and to whom or what charities you need to give.
Another challenge during Ramadan is your little kid’s inability to comprehend the aspects of fasting. However, there are a couple things you can do that can help your children understand that Ramadan is a special month. Decorations can be fun for you and your kids. Having the house filled with lanterns, lights, patterns, and much more will definitely ignite excitement among the children. I bought a children’s book about Ramadan and I read it for bedtime, no joke, every day, so far no complaints.
However, the kids still need to be entertained, so what should one do? Minnie pools are always fun! They can play for a couple of hours in the pool and you can just relax next to them and catch up on the Quran readings. Time throughout the day, you might find that you want to take a nap, especially in very extremely hot places, a busy box is a way to go. There are tons of busy box ideas on the net, just browse busy box ideas and you will find endless results.
This is probably the only time you want your kids to start going to bed later at night. You don’t want your children to wake up bright and early in the morning when you are running on 3 hours of sleep and have to fast throughout the day. That would be just, for lack of better words, hell!
These are some ideas I am sharing with you about the experience I have with my little kids. I would love to hear some tricks that you might have to prepare for Ramadan. Major advice beforehand will be much appreciate it!
Ignite your Ramadan with these readings and journals.
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